So far on Monika Making Moves I’ve been mostly sharing my travel stories and tips. While travel is a big part of my life and of who I am, there’s something else that’s keeping me moving. My wedding. Oh Lord, how it has kept me moving! We’ve been engaged for almost a year now and as we move into the summer, it’s becoming real. Get ready people, this is a wedding post.
Yesterday, May 30th, 2018, was a milestone for my fiance Randy and I. Yesterday was our 100 day mark until our wedding on September 7th. Now we are officially in the double digits. Dun dun dunnnnnnnnn! Okay, it’s not that scary but it is a little stressful because now plans are fully in motion. And whatever plans aren’t in full motion yet, need to be kicked into high gear.
I just was a naive little thing before getting engaged. I had no idea of everything that it takes to plan a wedding. My previous experience included the following: being a flower girl in multiple weddings, watching Say Yes to the Dress, and being a longtime admirer of cake. I had no idea of the hours, money, and brain power it takes to get everything sorted. And I’m not even having a wicked (sorry, Massachusetts word) lavish wedding!
Over the past 9 ½ months I have made mistakes, irritated my family and fiance Randy (even if he won’t admit it), and jumped to crazy conclusions. In so many words, I’ve been a bit of an emotional roller coaster. Don’t get me wrong though, I’m so excited to marry Randy. This is all a dream come true. I’m not saying that it’s been a terrible 9 ½ months. On the contrary, it’s been a lot of fun! I’ve really enjoyed my free cake and dress shopping, but there have been some bumps along the way. And most of the time it’s because I’ve needed a serious removal of my head from my ass. So what mantras have kept me (sorta) sane over these past several months?
Trust that there is always a solution
Multiple times during our engagement, I’ve had to say this to myself. For instance, I always knew that I’d like to get married towards the end of summer/beginning of fall. When I got a teaching job shortly after returning home from Madrid, I knew I wouldn’t be able to take any vacations in the middle of the school week. Especially not during the beginning of the school year. And especially not during my first year teaching at the school.
I was so upset knowing that I was going to have to either move up my wedding date to the middle of the summer or push my wedding to Christmas vacation. Neither of which I really wanted to do. After much discussion, Randy and I found our solution: get married at the end of summer like we want and hold off on the honeymoon until Christmas break. We had to compromise a little but in the end we got the date we both wanted, while also keeping my job 😉
Be smart about money but not obsessive
This is a difficult one for me. By nature I’m a saver, dare I say even a Frugal Fanny? (I think only New England readers will find that funny). It’s tough for me to part with money. So imagine what spending thousands of dollars on a caterer has been doing to me. All I think is, damn I could make chicken and rice for 150 people for a fraction of the price. *Cut to me in chef’s hat surrounded by mountains of raw chicken*
But when the logical part of my brain kicks in I know that I can’t avoid spending money for the wedding. Randy and I chose to have this wedding, we wanted our family and friends to be there, and we would like everyone to go home happy (not with a small case of salmonella because I cheaped out on the food). So there is money that will have to be spent. We just have to be wise about it and say no to stuff like $1,500 invitations and champagne that no one will drink.
You’re not a bad person because you can’t invite everyone
Randy and I both come from big families so even before we were able to add friends to our list, we were in the 100s. Our original list was close to 250 and we cut it down to 155 and then it was brought back up to our current number of 172. Over the course of this planning process, we’ve had to make tough decisions. Which family members do we cut? Which friends do we cut? Are we inviting kids? It sucks but we don’t have the room for everyone (or frankly, the money).
Many times during these discussions with Randy and my parents I have felt like a horrible person and I’ve beat myself up. In the midst of my frustrated tears I’ve have to repeat in my head, “I’m not a bad person. I’m doing the best I can.” I’ve just had to come to grips that some people will be mad at me.
Simplify, Simplify, Simplify!
Randy and I knew we wanted to have an evening wedding, with a “Starry Night” theme, so we went straight to Pinterest. We found so many cute ideas to make our wedding a little more memorable. We thought, Oh wow, there are tons of detailed projects that we could DIY together during the summer. So sweet, right? Ya, until you go over board and want to DIY everything and you’re stuck in a never-ending hipster spiral!
At one point, I was prepared to build and paint this life-sized crescent moon for people to take pictures on. Really unique idea, but the idea of making this became daunting. With all of the other, more necessary, wedding tasks, how were we going to get this done? We have trips planned, my bridal shower, his bachelor party, my bachelorette party, and everything else this summer. There’s just no time, I had to admit defeat. I thought, why am I stressing over something people may not even use? Why complicate things? Do I really want to worry about a wooden moon during the 5 hours we have at the venue? Randy and I decided to simplify, simplify, simplify. It’s a wedding, not a circus.
You’re entitled to have your hair whatever color you want
So this mantra may not apply to everyone but it’s something I need to remind myself of when the question, “You’re going to dye your hair back to brown, right?” comes up. My answer? No. I love my blue hair. To me it’s a reminder of my independence and growing self-confidence. Some have said that I’ll regret it because it’ll date my photos in the future. Ummm last time I checked, poofy sleeves have not graced this year’s wedding magazine covers (I’m looking at you mama!). Let’s face it, there’s bound to be something in your wedding that dates it. So if you like it, own it. And then own it again in 30 years when your kids ask you why you have a huge flower crown on your head and your cake looks naked.
At the end of it all, this is my wedding and I’m going to enjoy every second of it. My mantras have gotten me through the stressful times in the midst of planning but I’m also vowing to myself that I won’t let the little things get me down. The majority of the hard work is over so I’m gonna live it up these next 99 days! Hellz ya! #Pimentobe <– credit to Rosey O’Brien for coming up with my hashtag.
Are any of you getting married soon? Have any of you had to say these mantras or similar ones to yourselves? Comment below and share 🙂